Sharing the road with tractor trailers can be complicated. Even when you’re all driving safely and following the rules of the road, there’s still the potential for a collision to happen at any moment. The idea of accidents is scary enough on its own, but when a commercial truck is involved, the crash instantly has even more potential to be devastating.
The reason truck accidents can be so damaging and cause serious injuries is mainly because of the size difference when the collision is between a regular vehicle and a tractor trailer. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), large trucks can weigh up to 30 times more than passenger vehicles. This means that when they collide, the passengers of regular sized cars can suffer from far more severe or deadly injuries.
In order to prevent these collisions from happening, or at least understanding what you’ve been through after an 18-wheeler wreck, let’s take a look at what causes truck accidents.
Common Causes of Truck Accidents
At any point, you could find yourself sharing the road with a large truck. This is common in the United States, as trucking is a major industry used to transport goods within the state, within the country, and to adjoining countries as well sometimes. When you’re on the road, especially a highway, it’s not rare to see a tractor trailer.
What also isn’t rare, though, is getting into a serious collision with one of those commercial trucks. While not every time you see a truck will cause an accident, it’s still important to know what can cause truck accidents so that you can avoid making those mistakes as much as possible.
Here are some of the most common causes of truck accidents, as mentioned in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) study on causation of large truck crashes:
- Distracted driving by a trucker or regular driver
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Fatigued trucker or regular driver
- Cutting off a large truck without enough stopping room
- Driving too fast or recklessly for conditions
- Traffic or congestion
- Blind spots for trucks
- Part failure, like brakes or tires
- Bad weather
- Roadway problems, like objects in the road or potholes
- Unfamiliarity with roads
- Overloaded or improperly loaded trailer
- Cargo shifts during transit
Any of these causes on their own could lead to a collision, but when more than one is combined, there could be even more chance that a serious accident could occur. To get an even clearer idea about what causes truck accidents, you should also be looking into who caused the collision to happen. Let’s take a look at fault.
Who Causes Truck Accidents?
In large truck accidents, you might think the person at fault is obvious—the truck driver. While that is true some of the time, that’s not a fair automatic response. There are many different parties who could have caused your 18 wheeler crash, and the truck driver could be just as much of a victim as you are. That’s why it’s important not to place blame immediately after a collision and wait until a proper investigation is performed to determine fault.
When you have a lawyer on your side, they will work to hold the correct party accountable for what happened. This means that they’ll gather evidence to see who caused the wreck, what happened, and what damages you’ve suffered as the result of their negligence. Since there are so many different parties who could have been at fault for what happened, you’ll want to hire an attorney so they ensure the investigation is thorough and fair.
Here are some of the different parties who could have caused your large truck wreck:
- Truck driver
- Another driver, depending on the situation
- Trucking company
- Employees loading cargo
- Employee meant to inspect the truck for safety
- Part manufacturers
- Government agencies, like for roadway problems
- Natural disasters
Any one of these entities could cause a tractor trailer collision on their own, or they could have worked together to cause the wreck. That’s why it’s important to have an experienced lawyer you trust—they know that fault can be complicated, and will work to ensure the correct party is held accountable for their actions.
That way, you can recover what you’re owed. At Schweickert Ganassin Krzak Rundio, LLP, we understand the complexities of fault, especially when it comes to wrecks with semis.
Possible Injuries from a Truck Wreck
One of the most important parts of a claim after being involved in a crash with an 18 wheeler is gathering evidence so your lawyer can work to prove what caused the accident. A vital piece of evidence will be how they injured you. Proof of your injuries establishes that their negligence harmed you, and left you with damages that could cause you physical, emotional, and financial losses.
Here are some of the most common truck accident injuries so you can recognize when you might have a claim against a truck driver or other party who hurt you this way:
- Cuts and lacerations
- Soft tissue injuries
- Broken bones
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Spinal cord injuries
- Neck and back injuries
Your medical bills, costs of treatment, and costs of medical devices can all be factored into what you’re owed for your damages. Additionally, your injuries could keep you from being able to work for the time being or indefinitely, which would also be factored into your compensation.
All of these factors will contribute to your truck accident lawyer’s calculations for how much you’re owed. From there, they’ll be able to prove a negligent party was responsible for your accident and all the harm you suffered.
Schweickert Ganassin Krzak Rundio, LLP Will Support You
After experiencing a truck accident, you’re likely devastated. You’re healing from physical and emotional injuries all while figuring out how you’re going to pay your bills during recovery and after. Our truck accident lawyers understand what a difficult time this is, and are here to represent you when you choose to take legal action to recover compensation.
Reach out to our office today so we can get started working together to get you justice.